6 New Reports Added to MyHeritage Health including Glaucoma and Prostate Cancer

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We are pleased to announce that six new health reports have been added to MyHeritage Health. The update includes new Polygenic Risk Score (PRS) reports for glaucoma and prostate cancer, an update to the PRS report for heart disease, as well as carrier reports for Galactosemia, Carnitine palmitoyltransferase II deficiency, Dermatosparaxis Ehlers-Danlos syndrome (dEDS), and PMM2-congenital disorder of glycosylation.

MyHeritage is the first at-home consumer DNA testing company to offer polygenic risk reports on glaucoma and prostate cancer, two conditions that affect millions worldwide each year. Polygenic Risk Score reports are a groundbreaking method to determine your genetic risk for common conditions. These risk scores combine the analysis of thousands of variants across your entire genome to determine this risk. With this update, MyHeritage now offers seven PRS reports: glaucoma, prostate cancer, female breast cancer, heart disease, high blood pressure, obesity and high BMI, and type 2 diabetes. 

Four new carrier status reports will tell you whether you are a carrier for Galactosemia, Carnitine palmitoyltransferase II deficiency, Dermatosparaxis Ehlers-Danlos syndrome (dEDS), and PMM2-congenital disorder of glycosylation. Carrier status reports can be helpful if you are planning a family as they help determine the risk for you and your partner to have a child with a genetic disorder. With this update, there are now 27 carrier status reports that are included in MyHeritage Health.

Many of our users have already shared the life-changing impact of MyHeritage Health. If you have purchased a MyHeritage DNA test already, you can easily upgrade to get access to the 48 health reports without the need to send in a new DNA sample. If you haven’t taken a MyHeritage DNA test yet, you can purchase a DNA kit for yourself or a loved one, and then upgrade to receive health reports. Users who already have a Health subscription can access their new reports from the Health tab on the navigation bar.

About the new reports

Glaucoma PRS Report

Glaucoma is a group of eye disorders that can lead to vision loss over time. More than 2.7 million people over the age of 40 in the United States have glaucoma. Globally, 3.5% of individuals aged 40–80 have glaucoma. It is considered the leading cause of irreversible blindness across the world.

Research suggests that people with a family history of glaucoma are at increased risk for developing the condition themselves. There are certain single gene disorders that can drastically increase the risk for developing glaucoma. Current data indicates that the combination of many different genetic variants across the genome can also result in an increased genetic risk for glaucoma. 

The exclusive MyHeritage PRS report for glaucoma assesses your overall risk for developing glaucoma by examining thousands of genetic variants known to be associated with glaucoma across your genome. In addition to understanding your risk, you’ll learn about the various types of glaucoma and any signs and symptoms to be aware of. Individuals at an increased risk will also get more information about preventative measures that can help minimize the risk of developing glaucoma long-term.

Prostate Cancer PRS Report

Prostate cancer results when there is rapid and uncontrolled growth of cells in the prostate gland. Over time, these cells can form a lump or tumor. About 1 in 9 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer over the course of their lifetime. It is the second most common cancer in men worldwide.

About 5–10% of prostate cancer cases are thought to be hereditary, meaning they are caused by a genetic variant that can be passed down within a family. Family history is the strongest risk factor of the disease. A man with one close relative with prostate cancer is twice as likely to develop prostate cancer himself compared to someone with no family history.

Research suggests that prostate cancer is caused by a complex combination of genetics and environment. The MyHeritage prostate cancer PRS report offers a comprehensive genetic risk estimate by examining thousands of variants across the genome. For individuals with a higher estimated risk, the report will explain early intervention measures to aid in early detection and optimal treatment outcomes. Early detection, when the cancer is still confined in the prostate gland, has a better chance of being treated successfully.

Here is a look at the MyHeritage prostate cancer PRS report:

MyHeritage prostate cancer PRS report
MyHeritage prostate cancer PRS report

Update to the PRS Report for Heart Disease

This month we are updating the MyHeritage heart disease PRS report based on recent advancements in heart disease research. This update includes additional variants covered by the MyHeritage heart disease PRS report as well as an improved statistical model to interpret the resulting risk. To learn more about the heart disease PRS report and to view the report, please see Introducing the MyHeritage DNA Health Test. As new scientific discoveries are made, we will continue to update our Polygenic Risk Scores to ensure that they contain the most accurate and comprehensive results.

New Carrier Status Reports

When two individuals who are carriers for the same genetic disease have a child, that child is at risk for inheriting the disease or being a carrier themselves. It is common for people who are carriers of a genetic disease to not know about their carrier status as most carriers do not have symptoms of the disease. The addition of the following 4 new carrier status reports enhances our growing carrier screening panel:

  • Galactosemia — Galactosemia is an inherited disorder that affects how the body processes a sugar called galactose. If left untreated, galactosemia can cause life-threatening complications including feeding difficulties, a lack of energy, a failure to gain weight, liver damage, sepsis and shock. Intellectual and developmental disability is also expected without early introduction of a low-galactosemia diet.
  • Carnitine palmitoyltransferase II deficiency — Carnitine palmitoyltransferase II (CPT II) deficiency is a condition that prevents the body from using certain fats for energy, particularly during periods without food. There are three different forms of the condition, and the severity varies widely based on what form an individual has.
  • Dermatosparaxis Ehlers-Danlos syndrome (dEDS) — Dermatosparaxis Ehlers-Danlos syndrome (dEDS) is one form of a group of inherited disorders that affect the connective tissues of the body. Signs and symptoms of this type of EDS include loose, fragile skin that sags and wrinkles. Treatment for dEDS is focused on addressing and managing symptoms.
  • PMM2-congenital disorder of glycosylation — PMM2-congenital disorder of glycosylation (PMM2-CDG) is an inherited condition that affects many parts of the body. The type and severity of problems associated with PMM2-CDG vary widely among affected individuals, sometimes even among members of the same family.

After clicking on ‘Carrier Status’ reports, you’ll find a list of all the carrier status reports and whether or not you are likely to be a carrier for any of them. At the top of the list are the four new reports: Galactosemia, Carnitine palmitoyltransferase II deficiency, Dermatosparaxis Ehlers-Danlos syndrome (dEDS), and PMM2-congenital disorder of glycosylation.

New carrier status reports (click to zoom)
New carrier status reports (click to zoom)

Once you click on any individual status report you’ll find more information about the specific condition. Here is an inside look at a Dermatosparaxis Ehlers-Danlos syndrome (dEDS) report indicating that no pathogenic variants have been found:

Carrier status report for Dermatosparaxis Ehlers-Danlos syndrome (click to zoom)
Carrier status report for Dermatosparaxis Ehlers-Danlos syndrome (click to zoom)

Accessing your reports

MyHeritage Health customers who have an active Health subscription can access the 6 new reports at no additional cost.  They will receive an email inviting them to view their new reports. 

They can also access the reports by clicking on the Health tab on the navigation bar. Users who have previously received health reports will see an intro wizard that provides a brief overview of the new reports.

If you do not currently have a Health subscription, but have either taken a MyHeritage Health test or upgraded previously, you can purchase a Health subscription and access the new reports. The Health subscription grants access to all new reports as they are released, for as long as you keep the subscription. 

If you have previously taken a MyHeritage DNA test, you can purchase a health upgrade to get access to these 6 new reports and dozens of others. To upgrade your kit, hover over the DNA tab on the navigation bar and select “Manage DNA kits” from the drop-down. You’ll be able to upgrade any DNA kits that you manage from that page. 

The new reports are available to MyHeritage Health customers worldwide. MyHeritage health reports do not tell you whether you have or will develop a condition. They only reflect your genetic risk for developing a condition. If a specific report is excluded from your results, you’ll find an explanation why at the bottom of the genetic risk overview page.

Physician Oversight 

Users in the United States will be required to update their Health Questionnaire before accessing their new reports. A physician from the independent clinician network PWNHealth will review the questionnaire and evaluate all health reports before they are released. When a report indicates an increased risk for a specific condition, the physician will further determine whether genetic counseling is advised.

If genetic counseling is recommended, a phone or video consultation with a genetic counselor from PWNHealth is included at no additional cost.

Conclusion

The MyHeritage Science team is working hard to bring you even more health insights in the coming months to help you make empowered lifestyle choices and improve your future health.

Wishing all of you a healthy and happy holiday season!

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